Friday, August 3, 2018

Mossberg 395SA Facelift

Every now and then I get the urge to do a little dabbling with one of my guns. Last month, at the Hessney Rod & Gun Auction, I picked up a Mossberg 395SA, a 12 gauge bolt action shotgun with 3" chamber and a 2 round box magazine. I had bid on it virtually sight unseen, saw a picture of it up on the viewing screen but never looked it over while in my hands during the auction preview. Figured if it was a clunker, I could test my skill at fixing it up and chances were, due to its place in the progression of items up for bids, it would not be in very good condition.

The truth be told it certainly was not in perfect condition, in fact it was missing one part. Still though, I was okay with that since it was in pretty darned nice condition for an old shooter. The metal has a bit of freckling here and there but retains, in my estimation, 92-95% of its finish. The wood was not at all cracked and looked fairly decent with several minor scratches and dings to the finish. Everything worked even though a part was missing and that was a plus. The part that was missing was the safety switch. All of the other parts of the safety were intact and worked properly as far as I could tell then and have since tested over and over again and the safety has worked properly each time. Buying a new replacement safety switch from Numrich Gun Parts Corp. set me back  about $8.95 for the part with shipping bringing it to a total of $15.00. Considering I paid relatively little for the shotgun that was not a bad additional amount to pay to make it complete.

After putting the safety together properly by adding the safety switch, I decided I would refinish the stock. As I said, it was scratched and dinged in several places - not that bad really but I wanted to play with it to get it looking nicer. I was not and remain not all that concerned about the possibility of it losing any value due to refinishing it since this is not, in the true essence of the word, a collectible.

Here is what it looked like when I got it:

The dings & scratches are barely visible in this pic of the right side of the gun.
Most of the dings and scratches were on the left side. Funny, in the auction
catalog photo of this gun it is almost impossible to see any scratches or dings.
I know, its a terrible photograph of it but that is all I have of what it looked like when I purchased it. It was not that bad but yet refinishing it was something I wanted to do nonetheless. I guess just for the sake of giving it a facelift to look more pleasing to me and to give me something to do. Here is what it looks like now:
As I suppose you can tell, if you saw the Voere rifle that I also refinished,
I like a more natural look for the wood than the original dark finish.
I just think it looks so much better like this than it did before.

I have a lot of other photos of it the way it looks now, just in case I decide to sell it. Not soo sure if I want to keep it or get rid of it. I had fun refinishing it. Besides refinishing the wood I also cleaned up the recoil pad spacer and replaced the swivel stud spacers. Of course, I had just as much fun shooting it to test fire it. Everything works as it should including the original magazine and a second one I picked up via of
By the way, I have to give a free plug to Joe R. Lowe Clips And Mags somewhere down in Texas. They had the mags up on GunBroker and their service was excellent and courteous and the used mag they sold to me was in fine condition. They have been in the business many years and by what they told me they have quite the inventory of magazines . The price on the one I bought was quite reasonable. There website address is, phone: (972) 986-8158.
Back to the Mossberg: I had been thinking I might take this gun hunting with me but have decided against it since I plan to do some bear hunting or may run into a hungry bear during deer season and have to defend myself with it. I cannot see being out in the woods with only three rounds in the gun - one in the chamber and two in the magazine. Five rounds or more is so much more comforting. Yes, I do have that extra magazine but I must say that trying to reload this gun quickly is not all that easy. Then again, being a bolt action, the trigger finger hand has to come off of the grip to reload - not good if a bear is charging or just advancing on you. I've seen enough bears in the woods to know they are there when I am there and three times now have been within 20 yards or less of them - one maybe as close as 25 or 30 feet. I'd much rather have my Marlin 336 in 35 REM or my Remington 870 12 gauge with me should I ever run into one that is fearless either because it is protecting cubs or because it is hungry and I look like the biggest easy to run down meal it has seen in years. Anyway, it was fun to shoot and now I have to decide keep it for a fun gun or sell it and try to make a small profit to use toward the purchase of some other gun at an upcoming auction. Decisions, decisions!
All the best,
Glenn B

Maybe He Could Shoot The Balls Off Of A Gnat At 100 Yards...

...and not kill the gnat. Even if Mike Wilson could not do that, he sure is one heck of a  excellent shot. He just set the world record with a 1.068" group and no it was not at 100 yards - it was at 1,000 yards! Very impressive to say the least! Congratulations to him. More at the source.

All the best,
Glenn B